HARARE - Opposition leader Simba Makoni has branded First Lady Grace Mugabe a liar for claiming that his Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn (MKD) was formed at Vice President Joice Mujuru’s house.
“No, MKD was not formed in any person’s house,” Makoni told a news conference yesterday.
“It was formed in a public place. There were a lot of consultations at my house but even that does not go for forming a party at a private home. So that’s a total lie that MKD was formed in Mujuru’s house.”
Mugabe’s wife told a rally last week at Rudhaka Stadium in Marondera that both MKD and the MDC were formed at Mujuru’s house.
Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC has also rubbished the claims.
Makoni told reporters that while he was close to Mujuru’s husband, the late liberation war hero Solomon, the retired general was never involved in the formation of MKD.
“General Mujuru was never involved in me quitting Zanu PF and becoming an independent candidate in February 2008 nor in the formal launch of MKD on 1 July 2009 as a party,” Makoni said.
“One of my nephews is married to Mujuru’s daughter. So VaMujuru nditezvara wangu (Mujuru was my in-law). So we couldn’t destroy that relationship because we belonged to different political parties.”
Terming the first lady a classical example of a disrespectful woman, Makoni said “the purpose of her current activities is not national”, but partisan politics.
“Her messages are not those of the mother of the nation, but are partisan, divisive, combative and self-centred,” Makoni said.
The former Zanu PF politburo member said it was imperative for President Robert Mugabe to react to Grace’s allegations as Mujuru was a State functionary.
“The president must come out clean and open and defend his vice president or act otherwise if he doesn’t have confidence anymore in his vice president,” he said.
“Since Mrs Grace Mugabe started her campaign, president Mugabe has gone underground…Does he approve of all statements being made by Mrs Grace Mugabe, on matters of State and government? Has he abdicated his responsibilities to the people of Zimbabwe, in defence of his wife?
“Is he acquiescing to, aiding and or abetting the paralysis of government by Mrs Grace Mugabe?”
The former Finance minister urged Zimbabweans to resist the creation of a Mugabe dynasty saying, “Zimbabwe is not a dynasty and we call on the people of Zimbabwe, especially the leaders and other members of Zanu PF to resist the dynastisisation (sic) of our country.”
Makoni accused Grace of abusing State resources and paralysing government business.
“Substantial State logistical, security, communications and other resources have been deployed in her service. Yet, besides being the wife of the head of State and government, Mrs Grace Mugabe is not a State functionary,” he said.
“And the position and functions of wife of the head of State and government do not attract the focus and limelight that have attended to her over the past two months, nor demand the resources being deployed to her.”
The former Sadc executive secretary said the resources dedicated to the first lady could have been put to better use.
He demanded that Cabinet ministers who gallivanted with the first lady the breadth and length of the country ought to explain what government business they were doing at the “meet the people” rallies.
Makoni implored legislators to take ministers to task on how much State funds were used on Grace’s rallies.